Chicago, IL, the city of Obama; Oprah; Bulls, Bears and Cubs; a mecca for urban sociologists and home to this year’s Association of American Geographer’s Annual Meeting.
From the 21st to the 25th of April, I spent my days listening to fascinating presentations, keynotes and panel discussions, meeting, meeting tons of interesting people and drinking some Chicago’s many local beers.
I had the pleasure to present some of my ongoing work on place, reputation and creativity at the From Kreuzberg to Williamsburg: Exploring the trans-local nature of cultural scenes and the creation and diffusion of knowledge, practices and value(s) across space, scale and industry session. In short, my presentation addressed how creative workers and artists talk about space and places in the story they tell about themselves. An important conclusion here is that a place’s reputation plays an important role in locational decision making, as well as the identity of the creative worker. It is strongly related to social networks, romanticised views of other (creative) places far away, and a negative attitude towards ‘competitive’ places.